Rainbow flag

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The rainbow flag
The rainbow flag has been a symbol for LGBT people since the 1970s. it originated in California. Originally it had eight stripes, but it now normally has six, representing the diversity of the LGBT community.

The different stripes are sometimes reckoned to have symbolic meaning:

  • red (representing "life")
  • orange (representing "healing")
  • yellow (representing "sunlight")
  • green (representing "nature")
  • blue (representing "art")
  • purple (or violet; representing "spirit").

The original version also had also a "hot pink" stripe representing "sexuality", and an indigo stripe representing "harmony".[1]

The rainbow flag has given rise to a number of variants for different sections of the LGBT community.

In January 2019 Manchester Pride announced that they would be promoting a variant of the flag with black and brown stripes to symbolise the struggles of queer people of colour. This had a mixed reception.[2]

See also: trans flag.

LGBT Community Flag Gradients


  1. "Symbols" (dead link; Archived version from Lambda GLBT Community Services as at may 2014).
  2. "Should the Pride Flag Be Updated", myGwork. (Archived as at 18 January 2019).